The following is an outline of the history of a particular military vehicle a CMP (Canadian Military Pattern), HUP (Heavy Utility Personnel). Built by the Chevrolet Division of General Motors Of Canada for use by British Commonwealth Forces during the Second World War.
1945, 7 June Data of Manufacture, All HUP series vehicles were built at Oshawa, Ontario Chevrolet Auto plant .
1945, 19 June- Truck used by BBC (British Broadcasting Corp.) as a press truck for covering General Dwight D. Eisenhower victory parade. Newsreels of Parade clearly show this truck moving along beside Mayor Theorello LaGuardia's Chrysler touring car which was carrying both the General and the Mayor. Parade 1945 Further research revealed the location and text of the side markings, unfortunately the lettering on side had been ground off. The grind marks did show the location, size and number of letters. Research at the National Archives in Washington, DC provide additional movie footage of the vehicle including side shot that provided the text. Research by phone and mail with the BBC in London provide little additional information other than it was believed that the New York Office had only one truck. During my research I learned that the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.) had used a number of CMPs as mobile recording units to cover WWII in Europe.
1946- Truck purchased as surplus by Walter B. Beardesford-Redmann who was a shipping executive with the Canard Lines in New York City. During the war he served as Director of Transport, Port of New York, for the British Ministry of Transport, he was awarded an OBE for his service. He purchased it for use on his farm/retirement home in up-state New York town of Salem. He later moved to Indian Head Farms, West Rupert, Vermont. The HUP was licensed for the road from '46 to '72 and was used by he and his family during that period accumulating approximately 25000 miles in 26 years. The only major repair was the replacement of a cracked cylinder head in 1960.
1978, 26 July 26 HUP sold to Kurt Streiber then a teenager in Manchester, Vermont he hoped to use the truck as a regular van. This proved impractical as he put it "I never was able to sort my feet out enough to get it out of second gear." This is because of the right hand drive left hand shifting of a non synchromesh transmission and location of gas peddle between the brake and clutch. In the hand written bill of sale from Mr. Redmann to Mr. Streiber was a brief explanation that he had bought the truck surplus from the BBC in 1946.
1979, 3 February - I acquired the HUP as result of an ad in Hemmings Motor News. The teenager when I first call and went to see the truck wanted $3000 which was more than what I was willing to pay. Several month later he called to see if I was still interested and while talking it came out that what he really wanted was a good woods motorcycle I just happen to have an Ossa Trials Bike and this was how I trade a motorcycle for the HUP. The HUP was trucked home to New Hampshire for restoration. The HUP need extensive overhaul due more to age rather than wear. Beast Restoration Pictures
1980, 7 June - I showed the HUP for the first time at an antique car show. Thirty-five years to the day that it rolled off the assembly line. Driving the truck the 20 miles up to the Crotched Mt. Antique Care Show was the first time that I had driven it over the road.
1980, Aug - Showed HUP for the first time at a Military Vehicle Meet until that time I didn't know that there was a whole group of people who collected Military Vehicles.
1980-1987- Search for history and restoration during this period BEAST underwent a running restoration, with each restoration phase timed so that it could be completed between club events. This kept owning the truck fun for the family as we were using it regularly. During this period I also spent time learning about CMPs. Letters written around the world to CMP owners met with almost universal responses. I always included photos of the truck writing to people in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, Holland and to the few others in the United States. Almost with out exception I received a response generally with photos or sketches in response to my questions.
1983, 18 March - The history of the HUP takes a big jump with the discovery of newsreel footage showing the trucks in the 19 June 45 parade. This discovery was as a result of a TODAY SHOW special about the auto industry. In a segment showing historic cars at the Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan one of the cars featured was Mayor LaGuardia's Chrysler Crown Imperial touring car, as Brian Gumble was talking about the car they cut to a 3 second clip of the Eisenhower Parade (High Resolution Video). In this clip just happened to be section showing the HUP with the BBC placard Parade 1945. From this chance glimpse and many letters and phone calls the history of the truck was traced. Searches of several old film rental libraries turned up a copy of the Fox Movie Tone newsreel "Eisenhower Returns Home" which covers the parades in London, Paris, Washington, New York City, West Point, Wichita and Abalone. One of the many phone calls was to New York office of the BBC and while they could not help with information having move offices several times since 1946. They however were very helpful and said "if you'll call back tomorrow morning at 9:30 they would patch me through to London on our line and have the names of people in the historical archives for you to talk with". The next day I called back at the appointed time and was indeed patched through to BBC archives in London courtesy of the NY BBC office. This call helped determine that the BBC only had a single press truck at that time.
1986 Aug- Showed HUP at the MVCC International Convention, Lowell Mass. the largest military vehicle show to date in the United States. BEAST 1986
1990 BEAST gets a Big Brother Beauty a 1942 C60S Pattern 13 Radio Truck
2000 BEAST is still going strong, only twice has a major part broken while on the road that a rear axle shaft. The shaft snapped one morning starting up from a STOP sign when there was a bang the engine accelerated and the truck didn't. A quick look underneath confirmed that it was not a drive shaft. The solution was easy, engage the front axle and drive home. Once the truck was home it was determined that the left rear wheel was no longer connected. The axle being full floating it was easy to remove and it was found that it had broken off at the end of the spines. The only problem was that about three quarters of an inch of shaft had broken into small fragments. This necessitated removing the differential for cleaning. The a replacement shaft being found through the world wide web which has brought together CMP enthuses from all over the world.
2002 Beast gets another big brother Canada a 1941 C60L Patter 12 Cargo Truck
2004 The other rear axle shaft broke at the STOP sign at the other end of the same street 2 miles from home. This time a Web search of race car machine shops resulted in a new axle shaft being machined out of a solid billet of steel. Once again the differential had to be disassembled to remove the small broken fragments of fractured axle shaft.
2011-2012 HUP OVERHAUL 2011 - After 66 years The BEAST is being completely disassembled and overhaul
2016 HUP gets to meet one of its' Canadian cousins at the 2016 Weare Summer Rally